Stratford High News

March 2021

From the Principal's Desk

Kia ora koutou katoa


The term is well underway, and I trust you are all in the swing of things for the year. Things are settling down and the staff and students are focused on their programmes of teaching and learning. As you will recall, I spoke in our last newsletter about the importance of being kind, caring, inclusive and an upstander and that striving to be better every day is crucial. It has been satisfying to see students deliver on this advice and actively working towards bettering themselves. We continue to deliver these messages through our assemblies, form class and individual conversations and encourage you to be having these conversations at home to ensure our tamariki know how to behave positively in a variety of settings.


Our Swimming Sports was a wonderful occasion, and it was great to see so many of our staff and students present at 7am to help with the setup of the pool. To me, this is an example of the community we live in and we are lucky to have such willingness to muck in and help. The supportive atmosphere was evident throughout the day with our senior students working alongside our juniors in their events. The highlight of the day was undoubtedly when one of students from Te Rangimarie entered the pool to compete and the whole school was chanting his name until he finished. You don't get that in too many other schools around the country!


To be honest, the only downside to the day was the number of students absent. Attendance is a legal obligation and non-attendance at these sorts of events does have an impact. It impacts everyone else, and it impacts on the students concerned because they miss out on opportunities to grow and learn lessons that can only be learnt through being part a larger whole.


Attendance rates across students in the secondary sector are alarming and continue to be on a downward trend. Non-attendance at school has a direct impact on achievement and it is important that we as adults impress on our tamariki that attending school regularly sets them up for life. We must take attendance seriously and it is critical that any absence is genuine.


Before the 1st of March every year, School Boards must submit their Charter, which includes the Strategic and Annual Plan for their school. At the end of 2020, we undertook the process of gathering feedback from the school community. This included our staff, students and parents and this feedback has supported some of the direction we have taken within our focus areas outlined below. The importance of strong learner focused relationships was a high priority as we know that teacher-student relationships support student success, as well as the desire to see a modernized approach to curriculum delivery. The analysis of the data we generate through our learning and assessment provides us with critical areas of focus. We know that 40% of our students in the junior school are stanine 1-3 for Maths and/or Writing and that a higher percentage of these students are boys. Stanines are on a scale of 1-9 with 9 being a high level of general ability. The disparity between boys and girls achievement is similar in the senior school and our NCEA results show that we must continue to explore ways of engaging with our boys and their whanau to ensure we allow them to be at their best.


Nga mihi nui.


Cameron Stone, Principal

KAMAR ATTENDANCE

We have had several questions around attendance after the reports were sent out. We are still learning the new student management system (KAMAR) and have discovered that some of the settings were incorrect. This, as well as incomplete attendance for some lessons, has contributed to attendance percentages being different to actual attendance. We have rectified this problem and if there are any further concerns, please contact your Dean.

NB: The portal for KAMAR is currently in the hands of Spark Digital and we are hopeful it will be available in the near future.

FOCUS AREAS FOR 2021

1. Building a relational learning culture founded upon the principles of the Positive Behaviour for Learning framework.
We see positive behaviour and learning is a way of life. This is the consequence of structures that support strong learner focused relationships (whanaungatanga), frequently acknowledge positive learning and behaviour, and allow students and staff to be at their best everyday.


2. Developing effective, relevant pedagogical practices that accelerates learning for all ākonga
We believe learners who know what they are learning, why they are learning it and how they can be successful, will flourish.


3. School systems and processes that are flexible and responsive to student needs
We are committed to ensuring our policies and practices promote positive learning experiences in a safe and inclusive learning environment.


4. Provide ongoing opportunities for Maori to learn as Maori
By continuing to develop partnerships with key stakeholders, we will strengthen our ability to provide learning contexts that are culturally responsive; cultural identity and language is promoted and connections to whānau affirmed.

2020 Consultation Feedback

Parents were asked at the end of 2020 to provide feedback on how the school was doing. This is a brief summary of the feedback received and will be used by the School Board and school management to provide direction.

Y9 – 13 Parent-Teacher Interviews

Thursday 18th March 4 – 7.30pm in the School Hall

Parents/ Caregivers of senior students (Y9-13) are invited to make appointments through www.schoolinterviews.co.nz using the code:

npasp

Please refer to the list of teacher codes to make an appointment with your child’s subject teachers.

Please contact reception on 765-6039 if you require any assistance.

Dr Michael Taylor

Deputy Principal (Curriculum)

Who do you contact if you have a concern?

If your concern is about your child's learning within a subject class, please contact their subject teacher in the first instance.


If your concern is regarding a social, emotional or behavioural matter, please contact your child's Form Teacher in the first instance.


The Year Level Dean will support any ongoing, unresolved issues.


For matters regarding Curriculum, that have not been resolved by the subject teacher or Dean, please contact Dr Taylor, our Curriculum Deputy Principal.


For matters regarding Pastoral, that have not been resolved by the Form Teacher or Dean, please contact Mrs Ralph, our Pastoral Deputy Principal.


What is a Dean?

Responsible for overall pastoral care of all students in their designated year level

  • Ensures support the high school journey

  • Manages any social or academic concerns you or your child may have

  • Manages relationship issues (teachers/students)
  • Manages prolonged or unexplained absences


Deans for 2021

Year 9 Mr Jeff Walker

Year 10 Mr Colin Franklyn

Year 11 Mr Bill McGeoch

Year 12 Miss Jodie Sullivan

Year 13 Mrs Jocelyn Baldwin and Mr Richard Armond


For formal complaints, please see our complaints policy on our school website.

Careers & Vocational Pathways News

Kia ora tātou, Whaea Wendy Eynon and Karen Lobb are the new careers staff @ SHS. Their role is to support teachers, students and whanau with advice and options on career guidance and vocational pathways. Appointments are preferred by contacting Whaea or Karen by email careersadvisor@stratfordhigh.school.nz or kl@stratfordhigh.school.nz. Ph 765‑6039 ext 730. Office hours 9‑2 pm daily.


Please LIKE our Facebook page and FOLLOW us on Instagram

Facebook page: Stratford High School - Careers and Pathways

Instagram: 2021Careers_SHS


Photo: Nicole - Gateway placement at Carac Group in Eltham gaining hands-on experience.

NCEA updates

Congratulations to Elaida Alluad and Jessica Huston who have both had their NCEA endorsement upgraded to Excellence. Subject endorsements for the NCEA 2020 examinations will be presented at the next academic assembly.

Dirk Vermeulen, Principal's Nominee

BE PROUD OF YOUR MOUTH!

Oral disease affects 3.9 billion people worldwide, with untreated tooth decay (dental caries) impacting almost half of the world’s population, making oral disease the most prevalent health condition in the world.


In Aotearoa New Zealand alone, around 40,000 children (0 to 14 years) had teeth removed due to decay, an abscess, infection or gum disease in 2019. In the same year, 270,000 adults (aged 15+) had one or more teeth removed due to decay, an abscess, infection or gum disease. Unfortunately, both statistics are worsening over recent years. Health specialists identify many reasons for such statistics in New Zealand, however, we as a nation can improve the prevalence of oral disease by making some simple changes in our day to day living.


How to 'Be Proud of Your Mouth':

· Brush twice daily with a soft bristled brush and fluoride toothpaste

· Floss between all teeth daily

· Make water your choice of drink

· Choose tooth safe foods that are low in sugar

· Attend regular dental check-ups (at least once a year)

Healthy Eating at School

A reminder to all students that energy drinks are not the most beneficial drink to bring to school. Water is available at drinking fountains and bottles can be filled also. We ask that parents support the school in encouraging their children to drink water at school. We aim to be a water only school.


The school lunches are continuing to be nutritious and mostly enjoyed by students. It is pleasing to see that students are taking extras for lunchtime or after school snacks.


Breakfast Club has started and is available from 8.05 am each day in Te Amorangi.

SHS Food and Nutrition Department.

School Accounts

Any trip accounts or invoices can be paid via internet banking to the school, remembering to use the student name as a reference for the payment.

Account details are:

Account name: SHS Board of Trustees

Bank: TSB Stratford

Account number: 15-3947-0328379-00

Scholarships at SHS

This will direct you to the information about scholarships that are available through Stratford High School.